July 8, 2012
They may be called "man's best friends," but dogs remain mysterious to their human companions. What do we really know about them except that they love us? Or is even that an illusion? No, says Stanley Coren, author of "Do Dogs Dream?: Nearly Everything Your Dog Wants You to Know" (W.W. Norton: 290 pp., $23.95), a professor emeritus of psychology at the University of British Columbia. "Science has progressed, and we have now come to understand that dogs have all of the same brain structures that produce emotions in humans," explains Coren, although he also cautions us not to make too much of this.
January 29, 2012
Not every ghost story translates well from page to screen - the 1999 movie "The Haunting," based on Shirley Jackson's 1959 novel, for instance - but the trailer for the upcoming film of Susan Hill's "The Woman in Black" (Vintage: 176 pp., $15.95 paper), starring "Harry Potter's" Daniel Radcliffe and set for U.S. release early next month, suggests we're in store for an effective, faithful rendering of this harrowing 1983 tale. Hill's story of a young lawyer's experience with a malevolent spirit - and how it casts a shadow over the rest of his life - has already resulted in a successful stage play and TV movie.
October 9, 2011
The Apocryphal Gospels Bart D. Ehrman and Zlatko Plese Oxford University Press: 611 pp., $35 Bart D. Ehrman is something of a superman when it comes to scriptural studies. He's a tireless and prolific scholar who has given us countless titles about the origins of biblical documents, their translation and transmission, and the human error that inevitably creeps into the process. With "The Apocryphal Gospels," he and colleague Zlatko Plese provide readers with a comprehensive collection of texts and fragments obviously related to the New Testament though they don't appear there ("apocrypha" refers to writings that are hidden)
June 19, 2011 |
Long before the Fab Four embraced the East, there were the Fab Three — Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau and Walt Whitman. Philip Goldberg's "American Veda: From Emerson and the Beatles to Yoga and Meditation — How Indian Spirituality Changed the West" (Harmony: 386 pp., $26) is an authoritative, engaging survey of why, starting with these three venerable American thinkers, the flowers of Eastern practices have thrived in Western soil. When he set foot in Harvard Divinity School a century and a half ago, Emerson had a shattering realization about Christianity.
May 29, 2011
It was supposed to have been lost in a bonfire more than 40 years ago, but we have it. "C.S. Lewis' Lost Aeneid: Arms and the Exile," edited by A.T. Reyes (Yale: 208 pp., $27.50), is an incomplete version of Virgil's epic that Narnia's creator loved and translated over the course of his life. Reyes describes Lewis' admiration for the poem (this may be why there's a Roman flavor to many of the scenes in his "Narnia" series, especially the sea journeys and battles); he enjoyed his own version so much that he read it aloud to his Oxford friends, including J.R.R.
April 28, 2011 |
YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen have bought the popular social bookmarking service Delicious from Yahoo Inc. Yahoo, trying to mount a comeback under Chief Executive Carol Bartz, unloaded Delicious as part of its plan to shed underperforming business units. It did not disclose terms of the deal. Delicious will become part of a new venture that Hurley and Chen have launched called AVOS. Hurley and Chen have based Delicious in San Mateo, Calif., blocks away from where they started YouTube.